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Speculation: Why didnít AA buy the A220?

Speculation: Why didnít AA buy the A220?

Old Feb 19, 20, 10:12 pm
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Speculation: Why didnít AA buy the A220?

Any reason anyone know why AA didnít purchase this aircraft?

Does it compete with the 175/95?
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Old Feb 19, 20, 10:19 pm
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They just purchased a bunch of new planes and need to pay those off first before looking for new ones.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 10:57 pm
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Originally Posted by enviroian View Post
Any reason anyone know why AA didn’t purchase this aircraft?
Anyone who KNOWS certainly won't be posting on a public internet bulletin board.

So, since you're just inviting speculation, I will jump in with a question of my own:

Would the current AA scope clause allow A220s to be operated by Eagle carriers or would they have to be flown by mainline pilots?

The E195s inherited from US were mainline and are being phased out, right? I'm assuming that the scope clause doesn't allow the E95 to be flown by Eagle or else these airframes would have been leased to MQ or some other Eagle carrier instead of dumped outright.

Last edited by Herb687; Feb 19, 20 at 10:58 pm Reason: SVA
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:10 pm
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While I can't speak specifically to AA's internal decision, I can make some educated guesses. The A220 is likely to be around for a while -- it has a very long range (transcon) and is very fuel efficient. It's still quite possible -- even likely -- that AA will acquire A220's at some point. It is definitely a mainline plane. DL's are configured with 12F/97Y, which is a bit small for AA's taste. I would assume that AA would look to acquire some of the stretched version, which I believe will seat about 20 more passengers or so. Actually, it might make a good replacement for older A319's! So, I wouldn't count out the possible of seeing the A220 in AA's colors eventually.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:29 pm
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Originally Posted by formeraa View Post
It is definitely a mainline plane.
If the Scope Clause agrees, that could be a strike against it.
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Old Feb 19, 20, 11:35 pm
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AA loves their A319s with a pathetic 8F cabin
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Old Feb 20, 20, 12:19 am
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Originally Posted by Herb687 View Post
If the Scope Clause agrees, that could be a strike against it.
The scope clause limits regional aircraft to 76 seats, except I think US allowed some 80 seat RJs that carry over to AA. Definitely nothing larger than that on AA or any of the other three US airlines with regional affiliates, so the E190 and A220 are without question mainline aircraft no matter how theyíre configured unless some airline decides to burn hundred dollar bills as fuel and use an all-J configuration or something.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 1:19 am
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Originally Posted by formeraa View Post
While I can't speak specifically to AA's internal decision, I can make some educated guesses. The A220 is likely to be around for a while -- it has a very long range (transcon) and is very fuel efficient. It's still quite possible -- even likely -- that AA will acquire A220's at some point. It is definitely a mainline plane. DL's are configured with 12F/97Y, which is a bit small for AA's taste. I would assume that AA would look to acquire some of the stretched version, which I believe will seat about 20 more passengers or so. Actually, it might make a good replacement for older A319's! So, I wouldn't count out the possible of seeing the A220 in AA's colors eventually.
The A220-300: 120-150 (160 max) passengers.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 2:27 am
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One of the goals after the merger (and the stated reason for canceling US Airways’ A350 order), was that they wanted to reduce fleet complexity. This is at least part of the reason they are phasing out the E95 this year. By 2023, they will only really be operating about 14 different sub-fleets. This is less than DL or UA, who have less total aircraft.

I do hope they pick some up in a few years though.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 6:43 am
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Originally Posted by ashill View Post
The scope clause limits regional aircraft to 76 seats, except I think US allowed some 80 seat RJs that carry over to AA. Definitely nothing larger than that on AA or any of the other three US airlines with regional affiliates, so the E190 and A220 are without question mainline aircraft no matter how theyíre configured unless some airline decides to burn hundred dollar bills as fuel and use an all-J configuration or something.
I believe there is also an aircraft weight component to it as well, which is why the E75 E2 is not being ordered by the US3 as it is too heavy. If that plane is, I can't imagine a plane that is meant to seat another 30ish passengers is going to be light enough.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 6:49 am
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I assume if AA hadn't a bunch of A319s they might have been a candidate for the A220. Down the road when AA begins to retire the A319s possibly but for now AA seems to be in the market for used A319s.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 7:27 am
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The answer is simple: Fleet commonality dramatically reduces costs.

If there were, say, an A220-500 and A220-700 under development that could feasibly replace the A320 and A321 respectively, they might have considered it. As it stands, they have 400+ of the A320 series that can all be flown by the same pilot group, have common spares and maintenance needs, and can be shifted as needed. The A220 has close to zero in common with the A320 and, as such, requires a different type rating for pilots, has wholly different spares and maintenance needs, and would offer AA a lot less flexibility.

Despite my irrational love for the 737, it's a head-scratcher for me that AA even continues to have plans to operate them over the long term. The extra 20 pax over an A320 or the marginal cost of operating an A321 with 20 empty seats must be really compelling to them.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 8:17 am
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So any jets of ~125 pax or less must be relegated to the regionals? (A319 is 146 pax, yes?) No business case for mainline?
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Old Feb 20, 20, 8:25 am
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Wasn't the A220 designed to compete with the medium size jet market? With 2-3 seating, and the -300 variant with similar capacity to an A319, B737 it seems to have been designed as a direct competitor to Boeing and Airbus.

What's AA's plan for an aircraft to fill the 100-ish seat market once the E195's are gone? After AA retires the remaining E190's, they have nothing to fit the gap between their 76 seat E175 and 128 seat A319. Delta was smart years back by scooping up all their 109 seat B717's. In fact, numerous airlines were scouring the market for used 717's and couldn't find many because DL grabbed them all, while laughing all the way to the bank with the high yields it offered. The 110 seat A220 is a perfect supplement, and possibly a long term replacement to their 717 fleet. An A220-300, with 120'ish seats will probably supplement or eventually replace their aging A319/A320 fleet.

It has an interesting history, none of which really makes it a true Airbus plane. From a pilot and maintenance perspective, nothing about it is common with any other Airbus model considering it was fully designed, tested, certified and put into revenue service with customers by the original manufacturer, Bombardier, long before Airbus took a 50.01% stake in the "CSeries" program that it was created under. Recently Airbus upped it's stake to 75%, with the Quebec government retaining 25%.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 8:30 am
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Originally Posted by formeraa View Post
While I can't speak specifically to AA's internal decision...
I can.

A220 is definitely still being considered.
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